Horn Tooting and Pings

Barry Meyers-Rice (barry@mips3.as.arizona.edu)
Tue, 3 Jan 1995 14:21:45 -0700

Hey, I just got the new CPN and see that one of my photos made the cover!

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Regarding wintering Ping hibernacula....

>>The bottom shelf of my refrigerator is suitably cold. They hide
>>down there in plastic bags during their dormant period. When
>>they break dormancy I stick them in the greenhouse. They

>What do they hide in? Damp sphagnum?
>Also, how do you determine how long to leave them in the fridge
>for? Is this data just from a text?

I grow these _Pings_ in a sand/peat mix sitting in water several cm beneath
the soil surface. Periodic checks in the greenhouse reveal when a _Ping_ is
ready to hibernate---no new leaves are forming, and by inspecting the rosette
center the plant is seen to have developed a dense hibernaculum. When the
last leaves begin to yellow I drain the pot of excess water for a few hours
and then pop the entire pot into a plastic bag and store it in the
refrigerator. About a month later all the leaves have rotted away,
leaving the hibernaculum bare. I usually disinter the hibernaculum and
separate any gemmae. Then I replace the top few cm of soil with a pure
silica sand mix and see that the hibernaculum and gemmae are all about
half buried. I think this help reduce mould problems. Then the pot goes
back into the bag in the refrigerator. Every month or so I open the bag for
an air change and a quick peek. Sooner or later the _Ping_ hibernaculum
begins to loosen---the small leaves begin to separate and spread like an
overly mature artichoke flower. The plant is ready for a new growing cycle in
the greenhouse.

I don't use fungicides or sulphur dust or anything like that when I store
my plants in the refrigerator.

I also use this technique with my hibernaculum forming _Drosera_, although
I'm not sure they're as picky. I seem to get just as fine results keeping
them in the greenhouse year-round.